CARACAS, Venezuela (March 6, 2013)--A week of national mourning was underway Wednesday in Venezuela, after the death of President Hugo Chavez.
The streets of the capital were empty Wednesday, as public employees, schoolchildren and many others stayed home.
But with Venezuela facing an uncertain future, many flocked to supermarkets and gas stations to stock up on supplies.
Nicolas Maduro, Chavez's vice president, will continue to run Venezuela as interim president, and will be the candidate of the governing socialists in an election that will take place within 30 days.
State TV reported the country's defense minister has pledged military support for Maduro's candidacy, despite a constitutional mandate that the armed forces play a non-political role.
Chavez supporters camped out all night outside the military hospital where he died.
His body will remain at a military academy until a Friday funeral that is expected to draw leaders from all over Latin America and the world.